Renewable energy use is rapidly growing across the globe. But as with every innovation, there’s always a downside which in the case of wind turbines is high bird mortality. Somewhere between 140,000 and 328,000 birds die each year from collisions with wind turbines.
But hope is on the horizon. Vortex Bladeless is a wind ‘turbine’ without blades that was developed by a group of inventors at a Spanish tech startup. With no whirling blades and no moving parts, this successfully crowdfunded new design consists of a conical cylinder fixed vertically with an elastic rod. The cylinder oscillates in the wind, generating electricity through a system of coils and magnets. It features a fixed mast, a power generator and a hollow, lightweight and semi-rigid fiberglass cylinder on top.
According to the company, this type of wind turbine would cut manufacturing costs 50 percent, operating costs by 51 percent and cut maintenance by 80 percent. These would be relatively noiseless, operating at a frequency unheard by humans. The only downside seems to be that they produce 30 percent less energy than conventional wind turbines. The silver lining? They’re slimmer so you could fit more of these wind turbines in the same space as regular propeller turbines.
A vision of the future of wind turbines
Vortex Bladelsss turbines are nearing small-scale production sometime next year. The passion and drive of this turbine’s inventors combined with their vision to help those without power make this an exciting and potentially industry changing product. Mother Nature must be smiling at the possibilities!